Feasibility Design of the Northampton State Hospital Shared Use Path

NOPS/MRGI Team: Ruth Penberthy, Karena Garcia, Barb Garrison, Christian Madrigal

2020-2021: In collaboration with the Northampton Office of Planning and Sustainability (NOPS) and the Mill River Greenway Initiative (MRGI), this student team developed a conceptual design for a shared-use path and bridge connecting the Village Hill and Bay State neighborhoods of Northampton, MA. The project supports local and state-wide initiatives to expand and connect shared-use paths.

The team first reviewed the site location and history and determined the project requirements from state/federal regulations and community stakeholders. For the path, the team prepared elevation profiles of the existing path and developed revised grading plans and drainage modifications for critical regions. For the pedestrian bridge, the team determined a suitable location, selected a bowstring truss concept, and sized the members through initial calculations and a structural analysis. The team also conducted preliminary geotechnical analyses near the bridge location and sized the bridge footings accordingly. The team documented their conceptual design recommendations in the form of AutoCAD drawings, photo illustration renderings, and a preliminary cost estimate to inform future work by their NOPS and MRGI liaisons.